Munster win clash of champions Leeside

SuperValu Páirc Uí Chaoimh

ON A marvellous occasion at a heaving Páirc Uí Chaoimh, Munster edged-out Crusaders in Saturday night’s clash of champions.

URC Champions Munster led 14-7 at the end of an opening-half following a couple of tries from Gavin Coombes, both of which were converted by Joey Carbery.

Super Rugby Champions Crusaders were on level terms (14-14) after an hour or so when Dallas McLeod nipped-in for a try, which Rivez Reihana converted.

Graham Rowntree’s side hit the front 10 minutes from time when they were again rewarded for going to the corner and a few phases later Scott Buckley squeezed over and Carbery converted to lead 21-14.

Crusaders finished strongly but while Jamie Hannah got in for their third try, the conversion attempt from Reihana drifted across goal and Munster held on to back up their win last season over South Africa A with another win Leeside.

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It was an outing in which Eoghan Clarke and Ruadhán Quinn both made their first starts for Munster, while Colm Hogan and Kamil Nowak made their club debuts.

Gavin Coombes was named Player of the Match.

Munster: Shane Daly; Seán O’Brien (Colm Hogan, 76), Antoine Frisch, Alex Nankivell (Rory Scannell, 54), Shay McCarthy (Tony Butler, 65); Joey Carbery, Ethan Coughlan (Neil Cronin, 54); Josh Wycherley (Mark Donnelly, 68), Eoghan Clarke (Scott Buckley, 50), Stephen Archer (John Ryan, 50); Gavin Coombes, Fineen Wycherley (Kamil Nowak, 78); Ruadhán Quinn (Jack Daly, 69), Alex Kendellen (captain), Jack O’Sullivan (Daniel Okeke, 80).